(Adds CEO comment on Keystone XL delay)
May 2 TransCanada Corp, Canada's No.2
pipeline company and the backer of the Keystone XL pipeline,
reported a 14 percent rise in adjusted quarterly profit as an
unusually harsh winter in North America boosted demand for its
Delivery volumes rose 24 percent in the company's Canadian
Mainline gas pipeline system and 14 percent in the NGTL system
in Western Canada in the first three months of the year.
"An unseasonably cold winter resulted in strong demand for
our critical pipeline and power infrastructure assets," Chief
Executive Officer Russ Girling said in a statement.
Girling said the recently completed Keystone Gulf Coast
crude pipeline between Cushing, Oklahoma, and the U.S. Gulf
Coast, expected to carry on average 520,000 barrels per day in
2014, had also helped TransCanada increase earnings.
Comparable earnings, which exclude most one-time items, rose
to C$422 million ($385 million), or 60 Canadian cents per share,
in the first quarter ended March 31, from C$370 million, or 52
Canadian cents per share.
The company said net income attributable to common
shareholders fell to C$412 million, or 58 Canadian cents per
share, from C$446 million, or 63 Canadian cents per share, a
year earlier. The year-earlier quarter included C$84 million of
net income related to an impact of a regulatory decision on the
company's Canadian Mainline system.
TransCanada is best known for its controversial $5.4 billion
Keystone XL oil pipeline, which has been awaiting U.S. approvals
for more than five years amid bitter opposition from
The U.S. State Department said in April it would delay
deciding whether the pipeline is in national interest until a
legal dispute is settled in Nebraska.
TransCanada said it had invested $2.3 billion in the oil
pipeline project, as of March 31 and was disappointed with the
"Our view is there really isn't a reason for this delay at
the current time. We would hope we can work through these issues
as quickly as we possibly can and get the process to the point
of a decision," Girling said on a conference call in Calgary.
On Friday, Natural Resources minister Greg Rickford said
Canada was not considering a challenge under the North American
Free Trade Agreement if the pipeline is ultimately blocked.
TransCanada, which also owns a major stake in Canada's
largest nuclear facility in addition to its network of
pipelines, said revenue rose 28 percent to C$2.88 billion.
Funds generated from operations rose 20 percent to C$1.1
The company's shares closed nearly flat at C$51.17 on the
Toronto Stock Exchange.
($1 = 1.0976 Canadian Dollars)
(Reporting by Scott Haggett and Nia Williams in Calgary and
Ashutosh Pandey in Bangalore; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila and